Standardized Test Requirements
Receiving Test Scores
When the ACT or SAT is taken, students may indicate three schools to receive their scores. When SMU is indicated, the College Board sends us a record of your scores four to six weeks later. SMU's code for the ACT is 4174, and our code for the SAT is 6660.
SMU grants credit and placement for scores of 4 or 5 on most AP examinations taken in high school. Six to eight credits will be awarded for scores of 5, 6, or 7 on International Baccalaureate higher-level exams, with a maximum award of 32 credits. For more information, click here. To receive credit for an AP test in high school, arrange for an official copy of your test scores to be sent to SMU's Registrar Office. Upon receipt of this information, SMU will determine the credit you will receive.
Temporary Test-Optional Policy
For the students applying for Fall 2021, Spring 2022, Fall 2022, and Spring 2023 admission, please reference our Temporary Test-Optional Policy.
Correspondence Course Credit
SMU does not accept correspondence course credit, however, such coursework may represent to the Admission Committee a commitment to study beyond the minimum high school curriculum.
Concurrent (Dual Credit) High School/College Programs
SMU first-year students may request college credit for coursework taken during high school. In order for this credit to be transferable to SMU, the course(s) must meet all regular transfer requirements:
- The course(s) must be completed at an accredited school;
- The course(s) must be grades of C- or better in comparable SMU courses;
- The course(s) must be submitted on an official college/university transcript; and
- The course(s) must NOT be a correspondence course.
To process your concurrent credit, please request that official college/university transcripts be sent from each institution you have attended. Please note that even though you may not be granted course credit, SMU must receive official transcripts from any college or university you have attended. It is the student's responsibility to ensure that a professional evaluation and an official transcript accompany all foreign transcripts. Send all college-level transcripts to:
Concurrent/Dual Credit Processing
Southern Methodist University - DES
PO Box 750181
Dallas, TX 75275-0181
If you are an admitted student and are planning to enroll in college-level coursework the summer after your high school graduation, please be prepared to inform your Academic Advisor of this intent during your session which will occur during orientation.
You will be notified of your transfer work as quickly as possible. If your concurrent credit does not meet the above criteria, you may choose to take AP exams offered by the College Board, or you may choose to take optional departmental exams after you complete orientation.
Receiving Credit for a Course Taken at Another College
Arrange for the college to forward an official transcript to SMU. If you are a transfer or first-year applicant, send the transcript to the SMU Division of Enrollment Services. If you are a continuing SMU student, send transcripts to the SMU Office of the Registrar.
We want to learn more about you and evaluate your writing skills. Each application (The Common Application, ApplyTexas, the SMU Online Application, and the MyCoalition application) has its own set of essay prompts with varying length requirements, but essays are generally 250 – 650 words in length. No matter which application method you choose, all essays are reviewed equally.
As a requirement of the University Curriculum (UC), all students must demonstrate proficiency in a second language. Students who do not enter with the equivalent of four semesters of college-level second language proficiency prior to matriculating at SMU are required to improve their proficiency by two-semester levels or to meet the four-semester proficiency requirement, whichever comes first. Proficiency can be demonstrated in numerous ways; to determine which path applies to you, please click here to refer to the detailed description of the requirement.